'Doing time after time’: an interpretative phenomenological analysis of reformed ex-prisoners experiences of self-change, identity and career opportunities

Aresti, A., Eatough, V. and Brooks-Gordon, B. 2010. 'Doing time after time’: an interpretative phenomenological analysis of reformed ex-prisoners experiences of self-change, identity and career opportunities. Psychology, Crime and Law. 16 (3), pp. 169-190. doi:10.1080/10683160802516273

Title'Doing time after time’: an interpretative phenomenological analysis of reformed ex-prisoners experiences of self-change, identity and career opportunities
AuthorsAresti, A., Eatough, V. and Brooks-Gordon, B.
Abstract

The study of desistance from crime has generated a wealth of research in the last few decades. Despite the many barriers ex-prisoners face when attempting to ‘go straight’ many successfully lead law-abiding lives. Two key features identified in criminal desistance are a shift to a pro-social identity and worthwhile employment or the development of a new career path. There is, however, little psychological knowledge available on reformed offenders' experiences of self-change. This study focuses on ex-prisoners' experiences of employment and career opportunities. Five male reformed offenders took part in semi-structured interviews. Data collected was subjected to an Interpretative Phenomenological Analysis. Participants demonstrated that desistance involves a shift to a pro-social identity and that self-change was a positive experience. An important aspect to emerge was the conflict experienced by the label ‘ex-offender’, which had a contradictory influence on the men's sense of self.

JournalPsychology, Crime and Law
Journal citation16 (3), pp. 169-190
ISSN1068-316X
Year2010
PublisherRoutledge
Digital Object Identifier (DOI)doi:10.1080/10683160802516273
Publication dates
Published2010

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